Malaysia to launch 24-hour news channel


SINGAPORE -- The Malaysian national news agency Bernama will launch a 24-hour television news channel Thursday. The pay-per-view channel will be available on Malaysian satellite TV service provider Astro.

The channel will have news content predominantly in Bahasa Malaysia and concentrate mainly on Malaysian news in the beginning, but Bernama chairman Datuk Seri Panglima Mohd Annuar bin Zaini said the channel will be groomed to become Malaysia's No. 1 news network, delivering news from the region and eventually around the globe.

At present, the Malaysian public relies mostly on international news networks such as CNN, the BBC and Al Jazeera for round-the-clock news.

The channel's tagline is "Baru & Benar" (Right & Now) and Bernama said it is committed to delivering Malaysian news that is "current, pertinent and relevant."

Bernama launched a 24-hour radio news channel in September, but so far it is available only in the Klang Valley, an area near the country's capital. The company hopes to expand the station nationwide soon.